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About the Show: Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition. Hosts Renee Montagne and Steve Inskeep bring the day's stories and news to radio listeners on the go. Morning Edition provides news in context, airs thoughtful ideas and commentary, and reviews important new music, books, and events in the arts. All with voices and sounds that invite listeners to experience the stories. Morning Edition, it's a world of ideas tailored to fit into your busy life.

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The number of coronavirus cases is soaring in Texas, where Gov. Greg Abbott recently rolled back some of his reopening plan. It's a move the mayor of League City, Texas, welcomes.

"I realize people have to work and I know we don't want the economy to shut down, but what good is the economy if there's nobody around to spend money?" Mayor Pat Hallisey told Morning Edition host David Greene. "So it's a practical matter."

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I want to bring another voice in here. It's Jessica Levinson. She's a law professor at Loyola University, as well as host of the podcast "Passing Judgment." Professor, thanks for coming on.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Commercial satellite images are revealing the extent of damage at a sensitive Iranian nuclear facility that caught on fire last week. As NPR's Geoff Brumfiel reports, experts believe the images indicate an act of sabotage.

Updated at 8:44 a.m. ET

From airlines to paper mills, the job news is grim, and there are growing signs it won't be getting better anytime soon. On Thursday, the Labor Department reported nearly 2.4 million new applications for state and federal unemployment benefits last week.

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President Trump issued a forceful call this week for America's K-12 schools to reopen full time for all children in the fall, suggesting that Democrats want to keep schools closed ahead of the November election and even threatening to cut off federal funding to schools if they don't fully reopen (something he cannot do). In this push, the administration has a powerful ally: the American Academy of Pediatrics.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Joining us now on the line is the mayor of Miami-Dade County, Carlos Gimenez. Mr. Mayor, thanks for being with us.

CARLOS GIMENEZ: It's my pleasure.

At the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., there is a stone memorial engraved with the names of graduates who fought and died in the Civil War for both the Union and the Confederacy.

Some recent West Point graduates want that to change, and they wrote a policy proposal outlining ways they say will help create an "anti-racist West Point."

When Christian Picciolini was a neo-Nazi, he heard the term "white power" all the time. It was the term neo-Nazis used as a greeting, as a pejorative, to instill fear, even to sign off letters in lieu of "sincerely."

"It was also a proclamation that distilled what we believed in into two words," Picciolini — who is now an author and founder of the Free Radicals Project, a group that works to prevent extremism — told NPR's Morning Edition.

Have A Corn Dog: Fair Food Without The Fair

Jun 30, 2020

It's a grim year for fans of summer fairs. The 165th annual Big Butler Fair in Pennsylvania's Butler County has been called off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The week of fair games, fried food and barns full of prize-winning animals has been a tradition for Butler County since the American Civil War.

Canceled fairs are an obvious blow to local 4-H and Future Farmers of America clubs who have been training animals for months to compete in livestock shows. But it's a big hit to food vendors, too.

Mississippi is seeing a sharp uptick in new coronavirus cases. The state is reporting double the number of new cases that it was seeing just two weeks ago. The average number of new cases each day this week is just over 600. And on June 25, the state reported more than 1,000 cases in a single day for the first time.

Former NASCAR driver Bill Lester, one of only seven Black drivers to race in NASCAR's top-tier cup series, wanted the Confederate flag gone when he raced more than a decade ago, but the time wasn't right, he says.

"There was no way that I could affect change during the time that I was racing," Lester says. "This is a different day."

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The fiery scenes of just over a week ago seem like another lifetime in the sprawling protest camp built around the Seattle Police Department's vacated station in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.

Tear gas has given way to the smoke from a hot dog stand. Makeshift clinics now stand on the streets where young protesters were injured by flash-bang grenades. Music — calypso on one corner, Public Enemy on another — mingles with the sound of speeches about defunding the police. Selfies are snapped in front of signs welcoming visitors to "Free Capitol Hill."

President Trump's pick to lead the U.S. Agency for Global Media, Michael Pack, showed up to work Wednesday for the first time after being approved by the U.S. Senate two weeks earlier.

His words to staff were affirming. His actions were anything but.

Former Defense Secretary and CIA chief Robert Gates said Thursday that it was "misguided" and "a bad mistake" to push away peaceful protesters at St. John's Church in Washington, D.C., where they had congregated on June 1 after the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers.

The area was cleared with chemical irritants before President Trump took a photo with the Bible in front of the church.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

North Carolina is experiencing a surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations during its second phase of reopening, forcing the state's health director to contend with the idea of a second shutdown.

"If we need to go back to stay-at-home [orders], we will," Mandy Cohen, the secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, told NPR's Morning Edition on Thursday. "I hope we don't have to. I think there are things we can do before we have to get there, but yes, we are concerned."

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George Floyd's brother Philonise Floyd is asking Congress to pass laws that will ensure his brother did not die for nothing.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Face shields are critical gear for those on the front line of the ongoing coronavirus crisis. But like other pieces of PPE, they often still aren't available. But one volunteer group, using 3D printers at home, has made nearly 40,000 NIH-approved face shields for health care workers and first responders — from New Jersey to the Navajo Nation.

Some of the country's most polluting industries have flooded state regulators with requests to ease environmental regulations, according to an NPR review of hundreds of state environmental records.

Companies across the country say the pandemic is interfering with their ability to comply with laws that protect the public from pollution.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

All right. You finally have time to write that novel you've been talking about. Some people are actually doing just that. Erin Clyburn is a literary agent who says she is seeing an uptick in submissions from writers.

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(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTER: What do we want?

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTERS: Justice.

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTER: When do we want it?

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTERS: Now.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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